A report on Polish People's Republic

The Polish People's Republic in 1989
Poland's fate was heavily discussed at the Yalta Conference in February 1945. Joseph Stalin, whose Red Army occupied the entire country, presented several alternatives which granted Poland industrialized territories in the west whilst the Red Army simultaneously permanently annexed Polish territories in the east, resulting in Poland losing over 20% of its pre-war borders - areas primarily inhabited by ethnic Belarusians or Ukrainians. Soviet-backed Polish communists came to power and oversaw the country's entry into the Warsaw Pact in 1955.
Border changes of Poland after World War II. The eastern territories (Kresy) were annexed by the Soviets. The western territories, referred to as the "Recovered Territories", were granted as war reparations. Despite the western lands being more industrialized, Poland lost 77,035 km2 (29,743 sq mi) and major cities like Lviv and Vilnius.
The 1970 Polish protests were put down by the Communist authorities and Citizens' Militia. The riots resulted in the deaths of 42 people and over 1,000 injured.
Queues waiting to enter grocery stores in Warsaw and other Polish cities and towns were typical in the late 1980s. The availability of food and goods varied at times, and the most sought after basic item was toilet paper.
The new Warszawa Centralna railway station in Warsaw had automatic doors and escalators. It was a flagship project during the 1970s economic boom and was dubbed the most modern station in Europe at the time of its completion in 1975.
Lech Wałęsa co-founded and headed the Solidarity movement which toppled Communism. He later became the President of Poland.
The 1980 Gdańsk Shipyard Strike and subsequent Summer 1981 Hunger Demonstrations were instrumental in strengthening the Solidarity movement's influence.
Logo of the Polish United Workers' Party
Władysław Gomułka and Leonid Brezhnev in East Berlin, 1967
An abandoned State Agricultural Farm in south-eastern Poland. State farms were a form of collective farming created in 1949.
Łódź was Poland's largest city after the destruction of Warsaw during World War II. It was also a major industrial centre in Europe and served as the temporary capital due to its economic significance in the 1940s.
Female textile workers in a state-run factory, Łódź, 1950s
Supersam Warsaw, the first self-serve shopping centre in Poland, 1969
Pewex, a chain of hard currency stores which sold unobtainable Western goods and items
Ration cards for sugar, 1977
Bar mleczny, a former milk bar in Gdynia. These canteens offered value meals to citizens throughout Communist Poland.
Trybuna Ludu (People's Tribune) was a government-sponsored newspaper and propaganda outlet
Andrzej Wajda was a key figure in Polish cinematography during and after the fall of communism
Allegory of communist censorship, Poland, 1989. Newspapers visible are from all Eastern Bloc countries including East Germany, the Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia
The 237-meter Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw, constructed in 1955. At the time of its completion it was one of the tallest buildings in Europe
Smyk Department Store, 1960s
Polish university students during lecture, 1964
One of many schools constructed in central Warsaw in the 1960s
Jerzy Popiełuszko was a Roman Catholic priest who supported the anti-communist opposition. He was murdered by the Security Services "SB" of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
A demographics graph illustrating population growth between 1900 and 2010. The highest birth rate was during the Second Polish Republic and consequently under the Polish People's Republic.
A typical socialist apartment building in Warsaw representing the style of functionalism, built due to the ever-growing population and high birth rate at the time
Konstantin Rokossovsky, pictured in a Polish uniform, was Marshal of the Soviet Union and Marshal of Poland until being deposed during the Polish October in 1956.
Poland's old and new borders, 1945

Country in Central Europe that existed from 1947 to 1989 as the predecessor of the modern Republic of Poland.

- Polish People's Republic

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Kraków

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Second-largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland.

Second-largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland.

Tomb of Casimir III the Great at Wawel Cathedral. Kraków was the capital of Poland from 1038 to 1596.
The Church of St. Adalbert is one of the oldest churches in the city, dating from the 11th century.
Woodcut of Kraków from the Nuremberg Chronicle, 1493
View of Kraków (Cracovia) near the end of the 16th-century
Tadeusz Kościuszko takes the oath of loyalty to the Polish nation in Kraków's market square (Rynek), 1794
Act of granting the constitution to the Free City of Krakow. After the Partitions of Poland, Kraków was independent city republic and the only piece of sovereign Polish territory between 1815 and 1846.
Flower vendors in Rynek. First autochrome in Poland, dated 1912
Kraków Ghetto, 1942—a German checkpoint during operation Aktion Krakau
Kraków's territorial growth from the late 18th to the 20th century
Camaldolese Hermit Monastery in Bielany
Convent of Norbertine Sisters in Kraków-Zwierzyniec and the Vistula River during the summer season
The Renaissance Cloth Hall (Sukiennice) in Main Market Square
The Kraków Barbican dating from around 1498 was once a fortified outpost of the inner medieval city.
Kanonicza Street, at the foot of the Wawel Castle
View of Kraków from St. Mary's Basilica in the Market Square
Palace of Art at Szczepański Square is an example of Art Nouveau architecture in central Kraków.
Basztowa Street, filled with some of the most unique historical buildings in all architectural styles; part of the Royal Route of Kraków
Pawilon Wyspiański 2000 is a rare example of Postmodern architecture present in Kraków's Old Town.
Planty Park, which surrounds Kraków's Old Town
A pavilion within the Planty Park during winter
The New Town Hall of Podgórze, which used to be a self-governing independent town until its incorporation into Kraków in 1915
Entrance to the Wielopolski Palace from 1560, the seat of Kraków's mayor, administration and city council
Matejko Square, featuring the Grunwald Monument at Kleparz, is one of the city's most important public spaces.
Socialist-realist district of Nowa Huta
The Center for Business Innovation office complex in Kraków
Unity Tower, one of the tallest buildings in the city
Bombardier city tram on Piłsudski Bridge
PKP Intercity train at the Main Railway Station
Wawel Cathedral, home to royal coronations and resting place of many national heroes; considered to be Poland's national sanctuary
Saint Anne's Church is the leading example of Baroque architecture in Poland.
Kraków University of Economics
Collegium Maius, Jagiellonian University's oldest building
Leonardo da Vinci's Lady with an Ermine, at the Czartoryski Museum
The National Museum in Kraków is one of Poland's finest galleries of art.
Kraków Congress Centre – the business and cultural flagship of the city
Kraków's renowned Juliusz Słowacki Theatre
Concert hall of the Kraków Philharmonic
Wisła Kraków Stadium
Tauron Arena Kraków
Cracovia Stadium
Wawel Castle
German concentration camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau
Wieliczka Salt Mine
Pieskowa Skała castle
Benedictine Tyniec Abbey

After the war, under the Polish People's Republic (officially declared in 1952), the intellectual and academic community of Kraków came under complete political control.

Polish Socialist Party

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Socialist political party in Poland.

Socialist political party in Poland.

The party was re-established in 1987, near the end of the Polish People's Republic.

People's Socialist Republic of Albania

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The Marxist-Leninist one party state that existed in Albania from 1976 to 1992.

The Marxist-Leninist one party state that existed in Albania from 1976 to 1992.

The People's Socialist Republic of Albania in 1989
Partisans entering Tirana on 29 November 1944
The People's Socialist Republic of Albania in 1989
Enver Hoxha in 1971
Bunkers in Albania built during Hoxha's rule to avert the possibility of external invasions. By 1983 approximately 173,371 concrete bunkers were scattered throughout the country.
Mao Zedong and Hoxha in 1956
Albanian poster in 1978: Marxism-Leninism: Victorious flag
Mount Shpiragu as seen from Berat showing the name of Enver written on its side
Durrës in 1978
Center of Tirana in 1978, with slogans and propaganda on all of the main buildings

Tirana soon entered into trade agreements with Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, and the Soviet Union.

A meeting of the Council of State during the 1960s

Polish Council of State

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A meeting of the Council of State during the 1960s

The Council of State of the Republic of Poland (Rada Państwa) was introduced by the Small Constitution of 1947 as an organ of executive power.

Rokossovsky in 1945

Konstantin Rokossovsky

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Soviet and Polish officer who became a Marshal of the Soviet Union, a Marshal of Poland, and served as Poland's Defence Minister from 1949 until his removal in 1956 during the Polish October.

Soviet and Polish officer who became a Marshal of the Soviet Union, a Marshal of Poland, and served as Poland's Defence Minister from 1949 until his removal in 1956 during the Polish October.

Rokossovsky in 1945
Graduates of the Leningrad Higher Cavalry School 1924/25
Sitting in the second row (right to left): 1. Bagramyan, 3. Yeremenko. In the third row (right to left): 1. Zhukov, 5. Rokossovsky, 8. Ivan Konev. Standing in the fourth row (right to left): 2. Semyon Timoshenko
Rokossovsky as Komdiv (division commander)
Kresty Prison, where Rokossovsky was imprisoned in Leningrad, today Saint Petersburg
Battle of Smolensk Diagram
Rokossovsky during the Battle of Moscow
Rokossovsky as commander of the Don Front, near Stalingrad, 1942
Operation Uranus
Rokossovsky interrogates Paulus at Don Front HQ: General Rokossovsky, Marshal Voronov, translator Nikolay Dyatlenko and Paulus (left to right)
German plan of attack
Rokossovsky in the gondola of an artillery observation balloon, summer 1945
Georgy Zhukov and Rokossovsky with Bernard Montgomery and other Allied officials at the Brandenburg Gate, 12 July 1945. Note both Soviet Marshals are wearing their Orders of Bath differently with Zhukov wearing the sash and Rokossovsky wearing the Cross around his neck.
Rokossovsky in 1945
Rokossovsky with Zhukov at the 1945 victory parade in Moscow
Rokossowski in Polish uniform
Monument to Marshal of the Soviet Union Konstantin Rokossovsky in Ulan-Ude, Russia
Monuments to Rokossovsky in Volgograd
Monument to Rokossovsky in Soviet Army and Polish People's Army Museum in Uniejowice, Poland
Bulvar Rokossovskogo, Moscow Metro station
Postage stamp of Soviet Union, 1976.
Postage stamp of Kyrgyzstan, 2005.
Commemorative coin of Belarus, 2010.
Bulvar Rokossovskogo, Moscow Central Circle station.

After the war, Rokossovsky became Defence Minister and deputy chairman of the Council of Ministers in the newly-established Polish People's Republic.

Edward Ochab

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Polish communist politician and top leader of Poland between March and October 1956.

Polish communist politician and top leader of Poland between March and October 1956.

Grave of Edward Ochab and wife Rozalia at the Powązki Military Cemetery in Warsaw

In Stalinist Poland he was responsible for enlisting the so-called enemies of the people to forced labour in the mines of southern Poland.

Prime Minister of Poland

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Head of the cabinet and the head of government of Poland.

Head of the cabinet and the head of government of Poland.

The cabinet of Prime Minister Leopold Skulski in a session in 1920. Due to the deep political divides of the early Second Republic, governments were short-lived, frequently falling within months.
Tadeusz Mazowiecki, former prime minister of Poland browsing an exhibition at the Europeana 1989 roadshow in Warsaw.
Prime Minister Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz (left) being sworn in by President Aleksander Kwaśniewski (right) in October 2005.
President Lech Kaczyński (left) and Prime Minister Donald Tusk (right), seen during Tusk's oath of office in November 2007. Frequent disputes between the two leaders characterized Polish politics between 2007 and 2010.
The Chancellery, located along Ujazdów Avenue in Śródmieście, Warsaw, is home to the premier's executive office and support staff.

Under the communist Polish People's Republic, the ruling Polish United Workers' Party (PZPR) dominated all sections of the government, as recognized under the 1952 Constitution.

Józef Cyrankiewicz

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Polish Socialist (PPS) and after 1948 Communist politician.

Polish Socialist (PPS) and after 1948 Communist politician.

He served as premier of the Polish People's Republic between 1947 and 1952, and again for 16 years between 1954 and 1970.

Łódź

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Third largest city in Poland and a former industrial centre.

Third largest city in Poland and a former industrial centre.

Sigillum oppidi Lodzia - seal dating back to 1577
One of the first city plans, illustrating the housing allotments and new development around Piotrkowska Street, 1823
Izrael Poznański's industrial complex (Manufaktura) pictured in 1895.
The Archcathedral of St. Stanislaus Kostka, completed in 1912, is one of Poland's tallest churches.
Plac Wolności (Liberty Square) with the Tadeusz Kościuszko Monument and Holy Spirit Church in 1930
Łódź Ghetto (Ghetto Litzmannstadt), was the second-largest ghetto in all of German-occupied Europe
Retkinia, one of many post-war utilitarian residential areas on the outskirts of Łódź.
Female employees at a textile factory in Łódź, 1950s
Sculpture of Artur Rubinstein and his childhood home at Piotrkowska Street
Light Move Festival in Łódź
Muzeum Sztuki, ms2 branch, a museum and gallery of modern art
Las Łagiewnicki (Lagiewniki Forest), part of the Łódź Hills Landscape Park
Herbst Palace, designed by Hilary Majewski, an art gallery within a historical mansion, which holds paintings from all over Europe
High-rise buildings in central Łódź
Manufaktura - once a textile factory, now a shopping centre
Major road network in the city
Łódź tram network
Piotrkowska Centrum tram station, also known as "The Unicorn Stable"
Atlas Arena, the main indoor arena of Łódź
Arthur Rubinstein, one of the greatest pianists of the 20th century, was born in Łódź
Daniel Libeskind, notable architect and designer
Andrzej Sapkowski, best known for The Witcher book series
Marcin Gortat, former Polish NBA player
Julian Tuwim, poet, a major figure in Polish children's literature
Jerzy Kosiński, Polish-American writer
Bat-Sheva Dagan, a pioneer in children's Holocaust education

Under the Polish People's Republic, the city's industry and private companies were nationalised.

Comecon

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Economic organization from 1949 to 1991 under the leadership of the Soviet Union that comprised the countries of the Eastern Bloc along with a number of socialist states elsewhere in the world.

Economic organization from 1949 to 1991 under the leadership of the Soviet Union that comprised the countries of the Eastern Bloc along with a number of socialist states elsewhere in the world.

Map of Comecon member states as of November 1986 Comecon as of November 1986:
An East German stamp celebrating the 40th anniversary of Comecon in 1989
Map of Comecon member states as of November 1986 Comecon as of November 1986:
Former USSR Comecon headquarters in Moscow.
1974 Medallion 10th Anniversary of Intermetall, that was founded in 1964 in Budapest
European trade blocs as of the late 1980s. EEC member states are marked in blue, EFTA – green, and Comecon – red.

The Comecon was founded in 1949 by the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, and Romania.